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Under new management.

File: 1451264959736.jpg (390.64 KB, 1353x900, 451:300, 558205-kikuta_04.jpg)

 No.4331

Hey /vr/. I just finished beating Koudelka and seeing each of the endings. Despite the state in which it released and the issues within Sacnoth that produced it, Koudelka's a great game. It's worth playing for those that enjoy truly dark games and RPGs, though it plods along because of the crippled battle system, and it should've been Kikuta's magnum opus.

Anyways, I'm here not just to talk about Koudelka and what could've been, but also because I'm looking for something from Kikuta's discography: The Lost Files. Right now YouTube user whitenoisemonster666 has about half of the songs uploaded, but I can't find the rest anywhere else.

Here's the full tracklist, of which about only 8 or 9 are on YouTube: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lost_Files

If you can't help, that's fine. Just consider this a Hiroki Kikuta, Sacnoth and/or Shadow Hearts general.

____________________________
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 No.4332

File: 1451266315265.gif (1.12 KB, 60x48, 5:4, the battle theme is now pl….gif)

I can't help out with your request, but best of luck with tracking it down, OP.

I'll be honest: despite Seiken Densetsu 2 being my favourite game of all time, and it having my favourite OST, I haven't given Kikuta's later/non-gaming stuff a listen. Where would you suggest I start?

Also, how did you find the soundtrack for Koudelka?

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 No.4333

YouTube embed. Click thumbnail to play.

>>4332

Thanks. I'll keep looking; maybe someone on /mu/ might have the rest.

I don't think you'll be disappointed starting with Kikuta's earliest stuff from The Lost Files. You hear enough of Secret of Mana and Koudelka in there to recognize his work: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL15aABU1R_GuHeB1WUJI9pUvTcwCABLIC

There's also an arranged single he released in 1993 called Secret of Mana+, wherein he mixes tracks from borth SD2 and SD3. I haven't listened to the whole thing yet, but I hear the last part is badass: http://www.emuparadise.me/soundtracks/highquality/download/Secret_of_Mana_Plus/FLAC/01_Secret_of_Mana_+/3067

Lastly, he does have a Bandcamp and a Youtube page, where the latter mostly advertises his Bandcamp albums. I downloaded Alphabet Planet, his free album, and will listen to it in a bit: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCy6_LDI2edFlRCn9rlG7YQw

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 No.4334

YouTube embed. Click thumbnail to play.

>>4332

You can grab the soundtrack for Koudelka from KHInsider, but I recommend using Video Downloadhelper for Firefox to get the videos from this playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL7B8AEE4F9D6A5F34

You can either download the videos and rip the music from them yourself, or you can buy the ConvertHelper addon that will handle the downloading and conversion to MP3 for you automatically. The reason I recommend this playlist is because they group smaller incidental tracks together into a neat "Scenes X-Y" pack, rather than the 15 individual tracks labeled "scene-2bbb" you'd find on khinsider.

https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL7B8AEE4F9D6A5F34

As with the game, Koudelka's soundtrack is a bit of an acquired taste, but there's nothing quite like it. Beautiful, haunting, gothic and emotional. It's dark and moody like it's successor, but the two are very different. Koudelka's more evocative of Castlevania, particularly select tracks from Symphony of the Night. You won't get intense action or anything, but the battle themes for the final fights are a must listen, especially for fans of Kikuta's work.

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 No.4335

File: 1451268767789.jpg (91.73 KB, 650x585, 10:9, 82dae22454bbefcfdc6a89275b….jpg)

>>4331

You the same guy I spoke to in that thread about Kikuta on /v/ a while back?

I didn't find the battle system for Koudelka that bad. Not great (Shadow Hearts certainly did a good job of having an improved system, and the sequels further build and refine on it), but still what I found to be okay.

Can't seem to find much at a cursory glance for Lost files myself. Did find a 2007 interview Square Haven had with him though if that's of interest.

>>4332

Koudelka's soundtracks a bit odd (and if memory serves is/was a point of disappointment to some expecting much more music, considering Kikuta was a composer). Much of it is short, scene specific stuff, longer battle music, and I think three credits themes. Also some alternate takes on songs in the game. Due to the horror aspect, much of the actual exploring is just silence apart from well done sound effects.

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 No.4336

File: 1451269671360.jpg (131.31 KB, 480x315, 32:21, Koudelka-Romania_480.jpg)

>>4335

Yeah, that's me. I finally got around to finishing the game and processing the different endings. Did you see the "Game Over" ending? Pretty grody.

http://diehardgamefan.com/2009/10/19/shadow-hearts-sequel-spin-off-start-over-or-stay-dead/

Koudelka got slammed pretty badly for it's battle system, which is what Kikuta feared, according to the guys in the above link. Apparently he had intended for Koudelka to introduce the Judgement Ring battle system in some fashion, which is what he came up with rather than the turn-based RTS system we got. After Koudelka failed and Sacnoth was picked up by Aruze, the remainder of Kikuta's company decided to implement his Judgment Ring mechanic in Shadow Hearts.

I enjoyed the SRPG mechanics of Koudelka myself, as well the weapon-breaking and leveling-up through use, but where the game really suffered was the programming. There was too much delay between action, wherein the game is just reloading enemy and character models after running animations. Very technically janky, but not a deal-breaker. I loved the quiet ambience of the game, too. It made me appreciate not just the stellar vocals & localization job Infogrames did, but also the few recognizable battle and intro/ending pieces Kikuta composed. It's a very cinematic game, but the cinematic portions are appropriate rewards for getting through the meat and potatoes of the game.

Did you manage to beat the final boss and get the "good" ending? I'm curious to hear what strategy you used. Mine was fairly improvised: after getting my ass handed to me and getting the canon ending, I just kept casting Reflect and FortifyVIT on each of my party members until I won.

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 No.4337

File: 1451270350224.jpg (17.67 KB, 177x559, 177:559, Edward.jpg)

>>4336

Yeah, I know Koudelka go shat on a lot for a number of reasons. Shame, since it still seemed like a pretty worthwhile game for me, albeit once that's not likely for everyone.

I can agree, the constant reloading after spells is indeed annoying. I did play it as a downloaded eboot on my PSP though which might have removed some of the annoyance due to it not having to load directly from the discs.

Infogrames did indeed do a really good localization job. A few typos here and there, but still. And with the game being English audio worldwide (even in Japan), it wouldn't surprise me if Kitkuta worked closely with Infogrames to make sure it was done in a way that worked well.

For getting the good ending, the main issue I had was the final boss being so fast. Casting a speed debuff or two on it while casting a few as buffs on Koudelka, Edward, and James meant I could at least overcome the healing it seemed really prone to when it gets low on health. Still, it's a lot of health to burn through, and I think as far as that phase went, Edward couldn't do that much aside from tank physical blows (hilarious seeing the final boss do so little with normal attacks, but so fucking much with magic due to the way Edward's built) and buff/debuff while Koudelka and James casted spells and heals.

You moving on to Shadow Hearts now, or have you already played those and wanted to see the series from it's PS1 roots?

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 No.4338

File: 1451271834904.jpg (51.55 KB, 349x480, 349:480, K1cover.jpg)

>>4337

I've already played Shadow Hearts 1 & 2, but now I want to play Shadow Hearts again knowing what happens in Koudelka. I may even play Shadow Hearts Covenant again and move on to the third game after it, just to say I've played them and seen the story through to the end. At the very least I'll get to enjoy the first game again and remind myself how the second game built on it, before I start thinking about what Koudelka and it's sequels might have looked like had Kikuta had his way.

Either that, or I'll hop on over to Breath of Fire: Dragon Quarter and see what I have to do to 100% it. I never did get to see those extra cutscenes or fight the secret boss.

Speaking of the story, Sacnoth also produced a manga side story and a novelization for Koudelka. I managed to snag a copy of the novelization off of eBay, but until I learn to read moon runes I can't make heads or tails of it. The manga at least has been translated already, but I haven't finished going through it. It appears to cover some of the events referenced in Shadow Hearts regarding Koudelka being captured for her talents and sent to a shady mental asylum.

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 No.4339

File: 1451272020427.jpg (35.79 KB, 600x450, 4:3, koude_screen9.jpg)

>>4337

>>4338

Oh by the way, do we ever hear about Halley and Edward Plunkett again in the rest of the Shadow Hearts games? The first game left off with Koudelka going to find Edward in America, but in the meantime we have no idea what he's gotten up to in the meantime. I don't think the manga or the novel cover it either.

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 No.4340

File: 1451272947159.gif (106.57 KB, 750x750, 1:1, sh2-judgment-ring.gif)

>>4338

Koudelka: The Mansion's Scream? I've heard that one's pretty damn hard to find; would be neat if you could possibly translate or at least summarize the differences between it and the game when you get good enough to read it fluently

>>4339

I'm not sure, still playing through Covenant myself, which makes no mention of either of them. I do figure that if they did show up again, From the New World would likely be where as part of the game is in North America, though given the game takes place in 1929, Koudelka herself would be 50 and Edward 51, perhaps a bit too old to be running around, although SH and SH:C have Zhuzen (age unknown, but by 1913 is over 60) and Gepetto (again, somewhere 60 or older by 1915) running around with Yuri and co. If one of the family was to be present or at least referenced, it makes me think Halley would be the most likely. But who knows; I haven't gotten to FtNW yet, and as far as I'm aware he's not a part of the party.

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 No.4341

File: 1451273725138.jpg (48.83 KB, 700x694, 350:347, Roger-bacon-statue.jpg)

>>4340

The oldest guy we've seen in all of these games is Roger Bacon, so I'd at least expect Edward to make a cameo of some sort. Maybe since he's based on a real person, it wasn't worth making a new story for him, but then again, it looks like they took a lot of liberties with Bacon.

While I'm at it, I may also order the Koudelka Drama CD from some Japanese music site or eBay. It's fairly pricey and only in Japanese, but aside from reiterating the events of the game, it covers additional backstory leading up to the events of the game. I might as well; I don't plan on dying before I've learned enough Japanese and traveled to glorious Nippon at least once.

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 No.4342

>>4341

Bacon is a different case than the rest of the characters, considering it sounds like the old coot found some way to become immortal to a degree or something, explaining how he's still alive in the late 1800s to early-mid 1900s. And even then, he doesn't run around in combat the way characters like Zhuzen and Gepetto do; not sure if he knows any actual combat-specific magic that he could defend himself with.

A bit more searching shows that Lost Files apparently did see an official western release by a company called cocoebiz. Not sure if they're still around, but if the full album used to be easier to find as far as being uploaded to places online, maybe they issued some takedowns or something.

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 No.4343

File: 1451275405191.png (283.82 KB, 565x477, 565:477, 2015-12-27_22-52-20.png)

>>4342

The Lost Files used to be distributed via mail order by vgmworld, which I'm going to assume was a property of CocoeBiz. Now they're CocosMahal and I have no idea what they're doing. Kikuta's site used to be different at that time as well, but now it's just hirokikikuta.com and the blog is gone.

Guy seems to be interested in doing either his own music or music for MMOs. Kikuta considers himself the same musician he was when he first began applying for Square in the 90s, but his work expresses itself differently as the times go changing. That would explain why he's been working recently with MMOs like Chou Bukyo Taisen and Concerto Gate, and why he decided to release The Lost Files in the first place. Now there seems to be no way to buy it or some of the albums he released through Norstrilia Limited.

Speaking of the Baconator, seems he's always been the slippery type. The Vatican tried to kill him after he copied the Emigre Document, so judging by his account he probably made it seem like they succeeded, and he just revived himself later.

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 No.4344

>>4343

There has to be something odd between Bacon and the Vatican. First they hire him to copy the Emigre Document, then try to kill him (double checking Shadow Hearts wiki just says that he escaped the Vatican, but doesn't say how), and yet when Albert Simon goes to the Vatican to accuse him of witchcraft many years later, they seem to ignore that (you'd think they'd be itching for a valid excuse to drag Bacon back and kill him, provided they did know he was still alive), brand Simon as a heretic for speaking against the status quo, and throw his ass in prison instead, effectively letting Bacon off the hook.

But yeah, the guy's slippery when it comes to evading danger in a number of cases (to be fair though, he does get caught by the Steel Claws early in Covenant). He gets really pissed at Yuri and the gang for leaving him alone on that mountain after the airship crashed in Japan, with Anastasia and/or Lucia remarking on how many bears they saw up there. So somehow he managed to evade them all while getting the ship repaired.

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 No.4345

File: 1451285145952.jpg (56.6 KB, 331x602, 331:602, RogerBacon.jpg)

>>4344

That sounds funny, but maybe the Vatican just didn't want anyone to know about Roger Bacon's involvement with the Emigre Document, and so Simon openly accusing him of witchcraft wouldn't been a big red flag pointing to it.

Just finished reading the Koudelka manga. Comes off as a typical shonen manga to me with it's twists and turns, cute anime faces and lewd jokes, and over-the-top fantasy action. This time the story is a rehash-sequel of the story of the game that raises the steaks and reveals darker secrets about Bacon and the document, like how Bacon may have mistranslated the Emigre document in order to prevent the world-ending result of successfully trying to execute a resurrection, and how his old pupil wants to summon the original goat-demon author in order to gain the manuscript's knowledge and achieve godhood. We also see how Koudelka's dad died and where she got her pendant from. It's a pretty fun read if nothing else:

http://mangasaurus.com/manga/3160/koudelka

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 No.4347

>>4345

>Image

Boy does Roger look decrepit there. Like, more-so than in the games, even Koudelka.

Anyhow, I'll give that a read sometime. Always kind of neat when a game series gets a manga, be it an alternate (if non-canonical) interpretation of it, or something that stands alone and is just another further entry in the series, essentially making it multimedia (like Wild Arms: Flower Thieves; wish I knew what the best fan translation of that one is).

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 No.4354

File: 1451417620440.png (185.53 KB, 1135x400, 227:80, 2015-12-29_14-17-52.png)

>>4331

Well hot damn, looks like somebody does own The Lost Files, and all but two of Norstrilia Limited's products: http://www.amazon.co.jp/s/ref=dp_byline_sr_music_1?ie=UTF8&field-artist=%E8%8F%8A%E7%94%B0%E8%A3%95%E6%A8%B9&search-alias=music-artist

The only songs I'm missing from it are tracks 4, 6 and 7, but good to see most of what Kikuta put out on his private label can be preserved.

I'll just get The Lost Files for now. I don't really wanna blow $200 on a bunch of music CDs I intend to rip. Not all at once anyways.

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 No.4355

>>4354

How much does that come out to in US dollars, $22 or so?

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 No.4358

>>4355

With shipping it comes out to roughly $26.

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 No.4359

>>4358

Doesn't sound too bad. Might want to make sure that the CD will work even on a western audio system first though. Not all that big on having physical soundtrack CDs myself, but I know with games and DVDs region locking can be a concern, and if you're looking at the Japanese Amazon site, I'd speculate that chances are it's the native Japanese release of it and not the cocoebiz western one. Just strikes me as something to keep in mind.

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 No.4360

>>4359

Good point. You think a Western CD/DVD drive might not recognize a Japanese CD?

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 No.4361

>>4360

I'm not certain, hence why I would say to be a bit cautious. Maybe ask on /mu/ or some other board that might know.

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 No.4364

File: 1451463087714.jpg (64.42 KB, 418x600, 209:300, mana65.jpg)

>>4359

>>4360

>>4361

I don't want to be responsible for you buying something you can't play, but I've never had a problem with audio CDs from other regions in the past.

Source: partly reformed visual-kei homofaggot

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 No.4401

YouTube embed. Click thumbnail to play.

Not so much related to Kikuta, but a twenty-three minute interview with a few of the Shadow Hearts team (Machida, the director and writer, and Kato, the character designer) was released a few days back. Figured it might be of some interest even if not necessarily about Koudelka.

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 No.4405

File: 1452284506501.png (6.44 MB, 2153x1653, 2153:1653, CCI01082016.png)

>>4364

Just got it. No issues playing it from my ASUS DVD-RW drive, sounds great too. Will rip it and post a mega link here, then maybe I'll set up a burner account on YouTube to upload the CD tracks.

Got this cute little Japanese ad for a CD/DVD shop there. Looks like it's the shop I bought the CD from. Probably won't be the last time I do business with them.

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 No.4406

File: 1452284702951.png (6.66 MB, 2153x1653, 2153:1653, CCI01082016_0001.png)

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 No.4407

>>4405

>>4406

Neat, hope you're enjoying it.

Might be worth putting the link to the rip of it in the share thread on /v/ as well. While it's not exactly vidya (I could be wrong, but aren't the songs on that all original works by Kikuta that weren't used in games?), but related enough that I think it would be welcome (not as if they don't get a range on non-vidya stuff in there too; I know one anon occasionally posts a mega full of lewd fan art).

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 No.4410

File: 1452376818388.jpg (25.58 KB, 500x500, 1:1, Lostfiles.jpg)

>>4407

Will do. The Lost Files album was what Kikuta submitted to Square with his job application, so I'd say it's pretty closely vidya related. The songs are reminiscent enough of his work on the Mana series.

https://mega.nz/#!AVp1iR6Q!sgJ2cZQgJKNEfBYFTD_GtlZz0K6O-86sJghW0sMzyWk

Linking it here: http://8ch.net/v/res/7623591.html

Direct link because I never figured out how to do that shortcut linking

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 No.4412

>>4410

Sweet, thanks.

To quick link between boards, you use three right carrots, the board name, and post number. So that link would be >>>/v/7623591.

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